There are many DOE programs available to local governments in support of better energy management.



Incorporating energy efficiency into daily operations and making our buildings better offers large benefits. By reducing the nation's building energy use by 20 percent, we can save about $80 billion annually and avoid significant emissions of CO2. In addition to cost savings and avoided emissions, upgrading these buildings, offers an almost $100 billion investment opportunity, which could create tens of thousands of jobs. See all energy efficiency programs listed below.  


Step up to the Better Buildings Challenge and be a part of DOE's elite leadership circle  310+ leading organizations commit to 20 percent energy and water savings in ten years. Partners are nationally recognized, profiled broadly in media, and featured for their sharing of solutions in the Better Buildings Solution Center.


Actively partcipate in Better Buildings Accelerators 160 organizations are involving some of the most persistent barriers to energy and water efficiency, renewable technologies, and infrastructure upgrade projects. Technical assitance, and peer exchange are key elements to Accelerator programs which cover a diversity of topics such as lighting, performance contracting, home upgrade program administration, combined heat and power, clean energy for low income communities, wastewater, and more.  

  • Clean Energy for Low Income Communities Cities, states, and utilities invest in the installation of energy efficiency and distributed renewables in low income communities.
  • Combined Heat and Power for Resiliency Communities work together and develop plans to capitalize on CHP’s strengths as a reliable, high efficiency, lower emissions electricity and heating/cooling source for critical infrastructure.
  • Energy Data  Local governments and utilities collaborated to demonstrate streamlined, best-practice approaches for building owners to access whole-building energy usage data with a specific focus on providing building owners with aggregated energy usage information across multiple tenants to achieve greater energy and cost savings. As a result of best practices developed by the EDA, 18 utilities serving more than 2.6 million commercial customers nationwide will provide whole-building energy data access to building owners by 2017.
  • Energy Savings Performance Contracting  Federal, state and local governments will work to expand the use of performance contracting to catalyze public sector energy efficiency investments and subsequently reduce energy and water consumption.
  • Outdoor Lighting Municipalities will collaborate to accelerate the adoption and use of high efficiency outdoor lighting in the public sector with the goal of replacing over 1,500,00 light fixtures, while development best practice approaches and addressing barriers to system wide application.
  • Wastewater Infrastructure State, regional, and local agencies will work to improve the energy efficiency of water resource recovery facilities by at least 30 percent on their path to more sustainable infrastructure. 
  • Zero Energy Districts Districts work to demonstrate the practicality of taking action to cost effectively meet zero energy goals and commitments. By completing a detailed energy master plan, governance and business case model, and development pathway for a Zero Energy District, partners will identify the best practice approaches of considering well-defined energy performance goals and incentives for the entire building and district lifecycle.

White House Climate Action Champions exude outstanding leadership in climate resilience actions and greenhouse gas emissions reductions. Champions represent a diverse group of 158 communities across the United States that are defining the frontier of ambitious climate action. They are identifying ways to better understand barriers to local climate action and incorporate lessons learned into Federal programs, tools, and processes.

Building Energy Codes Technical Assistance

Technical assistance program to help states and local code enforcement jurisdictions adopt, upgrade, implement, and enforce their residential and commercial building codes through analysis of energy data and code adoption, customized educational materials, and compliance resources.



Our nation has abundant solar, water, wind, and geothermal energy resources, and many U.S. companies are developing, manufacturing, and installing cutting-edge, high-tech renewable energy systems. DOE leads a large network of researchers and other partners to deliver innovative technologies that will make renewable electricity generation cost competitive with traditional sources of energy. We are catalyzing the transformation of the nation’s energy system and building on a tradition of U.S. leadership in science and engineering as a cornerstone of our economic prosperity. See all renewables programs listed below.  


SolSmart provides national recognition and a no-cost technical assistance program for local governments designed to drive greater solar deployment and help make it possible for even more American homes and businesses to access affordable and renewable solar energy to meet their electricity needs. Sign up for a SolSmart Advisor.



SunShot Catalyst Energy Innovation Prize makes it faster and easier for American innovators to launch cutting-edge companies, while tackling time-sensitive market challenges. The program transfers business plans to energy startups with products in 90 days to catalyze the rapid creation and development of products and solutions that address near-term challenges in the U.S. solar and energy efficiency marketplaces.



Transporation accounts for one-third of total United States energy consumption. It is an important planning area that is also key to a community’s vision for its future. Nearly all of the energy consumed in this sector is petroleum (92%), with small amounts of renewable fuels (5%) and natural gas (3%). With the future use of plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles on the rise, transportation will begin to use electric utility resources; which is very important because when it comes to reducing dependence on petroleum-based fuels it means enhancing both our local energy and stabalizing our economic security. See all transportation programs listed below.  


Clean Cities fuels a national network of local coalitions and stakeholders working to advance alternative fuels and advanced vehicles. Check out the alternative fuels data center to compare fuel types and their applications, or fueleconomy.gov to compare vehicle efficiency.



SMART Mobility Initiative

Supports the Department of Transportation’s Smart City Challenge by providing expert guidance and resources pertaining to transportation electrification and the deployment of alternative fuel vehicle fleet deployment, in tandem with EV Everywhere, and Clean Cities.



Understanding city decision making, actions, and metrics in the energy and climate domain enables organizations to better provide the resources and tools cities need to lead clean energy and low-carbon innovation. Given increasing urbanization worldwide and their large energy footprint, cities are well positioned to have significant impacts on energy use. A transition to cleaner forms of energy may result in energy reliability, price stability, and cleaner air and water; it should also help city dwellers mitigate and adapt to climate change. There is increasing evidence that city decision makers are acknowledging and addressing the opportunity to achieve cost saving and resiliency benefits and to realize climate impact mitigation through clean energy innovation and actions. See all energy data and smart planning programs below.



Cities-LEAP works with cities on standardized, localized energy data and analysis that enables leadership in clean energy innovation and integration of strategic energy analysis into decision making. Check out the toolkit for action for tips to build your own Smart Energy Plan. Develop and pilot data-driven decision frameworks by local or tribal governments to support their energy and climate goals.

Partnerships with state and local governments and efficiency program administrators, leading non-profits and private sector companies that are committed to radically reshaping the data landscape in the buildings sector and using a common data platform to support either implementing building performance reporting regulations and/or tracking the performance of their own buildings.




State and Local Solution Center

Resources to advance successful, high-impact clean energy policies, programs, and projects. By championing state and local leadership, addressing specific market barriers, and promoting standardized approaches, the Solution Center aims to help states, local governments, and K-12 schools take clean energy to scale in their communities.

State, Local, and Tribal Technical Assistance Gateway

The State, Local and Tribal Technical Assistance Gateway provides an access point to DOE’s technical assistance and cooperative activities with state, local and tribal officials. Through its program and staff offices, DOE has engaged extensively with various levels of state, local and tribal governments, providing technical assistance on a range of energy issues. Our existing technical assistance and other activities, as well as relevant information offered by other federal agencies, are accessible by program or topic.

If you’re a state, local or tribal official, or a representative from an organization of such officials, with a specific question or need for assistance, email us and we’ll work collaboratively across the DOE to address your inquiry.  Responses could include access to DOE and national laboratory experts; ongoing cooperative activities with national state, local, regional and tribal associations and external subject matter experts; and existing and new materials including guidebooks, toolkits, webinars and data. Any technical assistance provided will depend on the inquiry and the availability of DOE resources.



As extreme weather events and associated energy security challenges increase, the ability of cities and counties to bounce back from natural disasters and disruptions is more crucial than ever. State and local governments with detailed and proactive emergency energy planning in place designed to address critical infrastructure needs have been proven to be more resilient in the face of these challenges. See all resiliency programs below.


Advanced Modeling Grid Research Program

There are hundreds of storage projects in the US which will be critical to modernizing the electric grid and supporting increased deployments of renewable energy.  Through the Advanced Grid Research and Development Program the viability and benefits of advanced technologies in partnership with local entities can be demonstrated across several key focus areas including.microgrids and advanced energy storage. The microgrid program has completed or is currently developing demonstrations in over 20 communities that will increase their energy reliability, resilience and efficiency.  In addition energy storage research, development, and demonstrations continue in partnership with many local communities and municipals.  Project details are shared through the energy storage database.

State Energy Risk Assessment Initiative

The State and Regional Energy Risk Assessment Initiative aims to help states better understand risks to their energy infrastructure so they can be better prepared to make informed decisions about their investments, resilience and hardening strategies, and asset management. As part of this Initiative, the Office of Electricity has developed a series of State and Regional Energy Risk Profiles Profiles exist for all 50 states, DC and 5 regions, that examine the relative magnitude of risks at a regional and state level highlighting energy infrastructure trends and impacts. The Initiative is a collaborative effort with the National Association of State Energy Officials , the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, the National Conference of State Legislatures, and the National Governors Association.

Transmission Permitting and Technical Assistance program

Technical assistance is available for state and local governments to address challenges related to grid modernization including transformation at the electric distribution system level where the advent of Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) and emergence of intelligent distributed assets are challenging traditional methods of grid planning, operations and business approaches.

White House Climate Action Champions exude outstanding leadership in climate resilience actions and greenhouse gas emissions reductions. Champions represent a diverse group of 158 communities across the United States that are defining the frontier of ambitious climate action. They are identifying ways to better understand barriers to local climate action and incorporate lessons learned into Federal programs, tools, and processes.